I can't imagine anyone would rent these out as they are pretty easily chewed. I lent my nathe to someone and it came back chewed up...so they had to buy it from me! They aren't identical, as the shape is a bit different and I consider the nathe somewhat more flexible than the duo. I have both, but have learned from my one lending episode not to do that again. The loose ring can be cheaper if you want to buy that for trying rather than the dee ring.
Doubt you will find anywhere. I think they are a very useful bit to have in your bit collection. But if you want to try something similar but more affordable. Go get a roll or two of Sealtex and wrap a plain snaffle it it (D ring). If you wrap the whole bit, you can make it feel more like a mullen mouth with some flexibility. You will get enough of a similar effect I think to let you know if that really is the direction for your bit that you want to go.
** The difference between genius and stupidity is genius has its limits. -- Albert Einstein **
I have him in the bumpy mullen happy mouth now. I want to go even more subtle. I have more than enough control in the happy mouth. I think he would like a nathe even more but I think his mouth is too small for the bendable rubber dog bone.
Shame....rubber dog bones are only 10 bucks....as apposed to $150! ya gatta pay for the good stuff!!
I actually can't find a nathe in a D ring! hmmm...
guess that narrows it down for me.
I'll have to go for the Herm Duo.
I really prefer D ring. It puzzles me as to why more folks don't use them.
I actually have a full cheek phobia. (I have visions of myself coming off and having that full cheek piece go up my nose or something...)
I get that the keepers change the angle but I've never actually felt the difference other than the keepers keep the bit very very stable.
Best I can find is the Duo for $144.99. Anyone know secrets to sale prices?
The bit in the above link is only $10 cheaper than what the HS Duo D-Ring goes for, but something interesting about it is that you can choose the density/firmness of the bit. Of course, ordering from the UK, you will probably end up paying the same as for the HS Duo in shipping. However, I've ordered from this company before (a happy mouth boucher that I could not find ANYWHERE in the US) and they are very good, I got the bit much quicker than I anticipated.
Description of the "density" options below:
Soft - flexible and pleasant in the mouth by a flexible steel core high security, particularly for sensitive or young horse
Medium - flexible with a certain stability, for normal use
Hard/Firm - but by the material is very pleasant in the mouth, for very strong or very supporting horses.
They offer the same bit in an eggbutt which would reduce the price to about $107 and you can choose between two ring sizes (60 or 75mm). Mouth thickness is 18mm (2mm larger than the Duo) for the eggbutt and d-ring.
I get my leather bits from Bedford Tack in Bell Buckle, TN. They keep them stocked now but custom make them within the day for misc sizes. Order 1/4-1/2" bigger than normal. They're loose rings but they're not really loose. They may be able to do it as a D if they cut down a regular bit- would be more $, of course, but the loose ring is less than $20 so not a lot. They bevel the leather so it's round. My girls really like them!!